HILLSBOROUGH — A township committeeman’s whispered profanity between public comments requesting a local mask mandate has been slammed by a grassroots group as disrespectful.

“I come here to advocate for reasonable safety measures — that I believe and other Hillsborough workers strongly believe — which is the ability to set, in Hillsborough, a mask mandate,” Didier Jimenez, a worker at Hillsborough ShopRite, said in delivering six minutes of public comments at the Hillsborough Committee’s Jan. 5 meeting.

"Oh Jesus, same thing, mother****ing masks," Committeeman Frank DelCore is heard saying in a whisper still audible to the microphone, around the 52:20 mark in the video posted to Youtube.

Another committee member coughs, which nearly obscures the end of DelCore’s comment as a second local resident, Tiffany Fowler approaches the podium — also to speak about masking.

Hillsborough Committee curse in between mask comments
Hillsborough Committee curse in between mask comments (HillsboroughTownship NJ via Youtube)

Both Jimenez and Fowler are members of Our Revolution Hillsborough, which slammed the profanity in a written release posted to the group’s Facebook page.

“ORH acknowledges this remark as disrespectful towards Fowler. To add on, the lack of action taken by the other committee members to address the remark is unacceptable,” according to the organization's statement on Monday.

Requests for comment from both DelCore and Hillsborough Mayor Shawn Lipani were not immediately answered on Tuesday.

On Tuesday afternoon, Gov. Phil Murphy reinstated a public health emergency due to the ongoing pandemic, effective immediately.

Among COVID emergency directives that are maintained under that designation, existing orders requiring masking in school and daycare settings would remain in effect.

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